Danish energy company, Ørsted, has begun construction on FlagshipONE, Europe’s largest e-methanol project. The plant will produce 50,000 tonnes of e-methanol per year when it begins production in 2025. The maritime sector is expected to be a major customer for the product, with 110 e-methanol vessels currently on order or in operation. The project was developed by Swedish firm Liquid Wind and will be located next to Övik Energi’s combined heat and power plant in Örnsköldsvik.
A key feature of FlagshipONE is its use of renewable electricity and biogenic carbon dioxide from Hörneborgsverket, as well as steam, process and cooling water from the same source. Excess heat generated during the production of e-methanol will be returned to Övik Energi’s district heating supply. Anders Nordstrøm, COO of Ørsted P2X, has described FlagshipONE as the first project in a new green industry in Sweden.
FlagshipONE is the first e-methanol project in Ørsted’s green fuel pipeline. The company is also involved in the development of Project Star in the US Gulf Coast as well as the Green Fuels for Denmark project in Copenhagen. These initiatives will similarly aim to produce significant quantities of e-methanol to facilitate the decarbonisation of shipping. Siemens Energy, Carbon Clean and Topsoe are also partnering with Ørsted on the project.
The demand for renewable alternatives to traditional fuels is growing. E-methanol is considered a promising replacement for fossil fuels in the shipping industry due to its environmental credentials. It is created using a combination of hydrogen and carbon dioxide, with the hydrogen generated by renewable electricity. Unlike traditional methanol, e-methanol does not produce greenhouse gases when burned.
FlagshipONE is one of a number of international projects that are aiming to increase production of e-methanol in the coming years. Bilfinger, ThyssenKrupp and Sunfire are collaborating on the Rheinhold & Mahla project in Duisburg, which will produce 1,000 tonnes of e-methanol per year. Meanwhile, in 2020, Renewable Energy Group announced that it is working to produce e-methanol using corn cobs, with plans to have a pilot plant operational by the end of the year.